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Can You Heal Cavities With Coconut Oil?

Recently I have seen more and more tweets and Facebook posts claiming that you can heal cavities and whiten your teeth with coconut oil in what has become known as “Swishing” or “Oil Pulling”.  It sounded like some kind of quackery that Dr. Oz or Gwyneth Paltrow would promote so I had to do a little research.  Sure enough, Dr. Oz calls Coconuts another miracle cure (not for your teeth but for about everything else from skin care to weight loss and diabetes care.) On the other hand, Gwyneth Paltrow is promoting it for Oil Pushing.  When asked about it, this is what she said, “It’s really interesting; it’s an ancient, ancient technique. I read about it on the Internet.” And, of course if it’s on the internet it’s got to be true right?

It’s really interesting; it’s an ancient, ancient technique. I read about it on the Internet. -Gwyneth Paltrow

Things everyone should know about reading things on the internet.  If Dr. Oz, Gwyneth Paltrow or Deepak Chopra recommend something, it’s probably some form of quackery that you should avoid at all costs.  Instead ask your doctor.  Don’t take my word for it and please don’t take Dr. Oz’s word for it or even worse, Gwyneth Paltrow’s.  I mean, she’s a dingbat.  She steam cleans her vagina.  Seriously.  Don’t ever take advice from someone that steams cleans their vagina.  In fact, you probably should do the exact opposite of anything she suggests.

So, Can You Heal Cavities With Coconut Oil? Here’s what I found about “Oil Pulling”.  There is no scientific evidence to suggest that it works accept bad some bad Photoshop. And as for all of those things Dr. Oz claims make it a miracle cure, Dr. Lyla Blake-Gumbs says, “There’s absolutely no data whatsoever that shows diabetes can be treated or prevented, or that heart disease can be…”  And as for the bad Photoshop, one such blog uses this photo…

Bad photo shop of the Before and After.

Look at that!  Not only does it whiten your teeth and heal cavities, it also whitens skin and pinkens up your lips, it is a miracle!  If you’re Dr. Oz or Gwyneth Paltrow this seems to be about all the evidence you need to call coconut oil a miracle cure.  However, the rest of the medical community seems to say otherwise. Snopes wrote about this a year or two ago and calling it Unproven and updated the article in February 2015.  They sourced three articles.  You can read the Snopes report here (Snopes on Oil Pulling) and you can read there source material using the links below.

The ADA (American Dental Association) says, “Based on the lack of currently available evidence, oil pulling is not recommended as a supplementary oral hygiene practice…” later on in the article they had this to say, “One study that compared oil pulling to the use of a chlorhexidine rinse found chlorhexidine to be much more effective in reducing S. mutans levels in plaque and saliva.”

Based on the lack of currently available evidence, oil pulling is not recommended as a supplementary oral hygiene practice… -American Dental Association

So please remember, just because it’s on the internet, it doesn’t mean that it’s true.  Do your research, ask your doctor.  If you think one thing, and your doctor disagrees, he’s probably right.  But, if you don’t want to listen, get a second opinion from another qualified doctor.  Chances are he’s going to say the same thing. If you still don’t want to believe them and think you and the internet know best, chances are you’re an idiot.  I am sorry to tell you that but someone had to do it.

As for everyone else, thanks for reading this and keep in mind that I am not an expert and I am not a doctor.  I am not hear offering medical advice.  I’m just a guy that is sick and tired of seen all these stupid blog posts in my social media feeds claiming things that are either total bullshit or have no scientific evidence to back up it’s claims.  I am just offering my opinion and providing you with credible resources to help you do your own research.  There are some seemingly reliable testimonials that have tried oil pushing and claim that it did whiten their teeth some.  However, there is no proof at all that it heals cavities.  None!

There seems to be no harmful side effects to trying it.  So if you have 20 minutes three times a day to commit to it, go ahead.  Just keep in mind that you shouldn’t spit it out into the sink, the paste will harden and clog your pipes.  Don’t swallow it as it can cause an upset stomach or diarrhea.  Dentists recommend brushing your teeth at least twice a day because that is scientifically proven to work.  It also isn’t gross.

Snopes: Oil Pulling
American Dental Association: The Practice of Oil Pulling
CNN: Does oil pulling work?
US News and World Report: Should You Try Oil Pulling?